The Philadelphia Handicapped Encounter with Christ Retreat Program

Dedicated to the Positive Recognition of the Worth of Each Person

HEC is currently engaged in small circle events engaging members of the community at local gatherings and celebrations. If you wish to be placed on our contact list so as to be informed of our endeavors, please email margie.kernicky@villanova.edu.

What is HEC?

  • HEC is a retreat experience founded to offer people who have physical disabilities an opportunity to come together in community to pray, reflect and celebrate their life with God.
  • HEC strives to offer an inviting atmosphere where all people can experience a sense of value, wholeness, and worth; a place where people feel loved and accepted for who they are.
  • In a spirit of faith and love, HEC provides opportunities to enjoy community experiences that are not readily available to people with physical disabilities. Through this community, all people are empowered to develop a strong connection to God, to each other, and to themselves.
  • HEC creates a space where able-bodied and dis-abled people alike, can join with people of other faith traditions, races, and walks of life to share life’s journey within a supportive and loving community.
  • HEC is a justice movement! Human rights and the potentials of each and every person are honored through the marriage of common sense, raised consciousness and Gospel inspired compassion.
  • At HEC, we're convinced that we each have the ability to make the world a better place, no matter what challenges we might face in life. HEC offers the community ways to make that happen. We all have disabilities - some have physical limitations while others have less apparent spiritual or emotional challenges. By nurturing spiritual growth through retreats, fellowship, life/faith-sharing opportunities, prayer, and liturgy, all participants are empowered by the Spirit to learn a way of living in which God’s love is made visible in the world.

HEC provides opportunities to:

  • smile, laugh and celebrate
  • encounter God actively in each other and in each of our lives
  • deepen spiritually through community, retreat, and fellowship
  • grow in self confidence to face the challenges of everyday life

HEC seeks to create an environment where:

  • all people experience a sense of wholeness and worth
  • people realize their gifts and share them more fully
  • openness, practical compassion, and service are valued

Contact Person

Margie Kernicky
2 Barley Cone Lane
Rosemont, PA 19010
email: margie.kernicky@villanova.edu

[610] 519–4080

campusministry@villanova.edu

Tolle Lege

John 11: 1-45

In the Spirit of St Augustine ask yourself the question: “What about the readings of Palm Sunday get me excited?” Jesus is riding into town on a donkey and people are throwing a party! They’re are laying down their cloaks and scampering to cover the road with palm branches to celebrate His arrival. Wait…does this sound familiar? David did the same thing with the Arc of the Covenant! He danced before the Arc as it was brought into the city and so too are the people celebrating at Jesus’ entrance, the entrance of the New and Everlasting Covenant. Whenever we gather together and celebrate the Eucharist we celebrate Christ’s arrival into the Holy City, the Church, and his arrival among us. We are the Holy City, the Church and we’re called to announce His presence and throw a party that invites everyone to the table. How are you extending that invitation?



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One-Day Decision Making retreat
Sunday, March 23rd

Search 48
March 28-30

A Day of Escape for Freshmen
April 5

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April 11-13

Connections Retreat
June 27-29